Western Pennsylvania wakes up to blanket of snow; schools delayed, closed
Winter-weary Western Pennsylvanians endured record snowfall on Monday, when many hoped for even a faint sign of spring.
“The snow is pretty, but it's time for spring,” said Marcia Petkovich, 63, owner of Puhlman's Flower Shoppe in Carnegie, after clearing heavy snow from her car.
Forecasters expect cold weather to last through the week. Daytime highs won't reach the 40s until the weekend but on Sunday could hit the mid-50s, a typical high for the last week of March, said meteorologist John Darnley of the National Weather Service in Moon.
The 4.1 inches of snow that fell was the most for the date in Pittsburgh, although the storm that started Sunday night dropped a total of 4.3 inches. One inch of snow fell on March 25, 1947, the previous record.
More inconvenient than disruptive, the storm made roads sloppy, delayed some school openings and caused minor power outages. The heaviest snowfalls were in Washington and Greene counties, where some locations reported six inches. Garrett County, Md., received 12 inches.
“Flowers are supposed to be popping up, not icicles on the trees,” said Michelle Artman, 44, of Munhall, an employee of Waffles INcaffeinated in the South Side. National Weather Service records show 54.6 inches of snow fell in the region this season, well above the average 42 inches.
“People don't realize it because most of the snow was in small amounts,” Darnley said.
He said snow fell in varying amounts on 91 days. Pittsburgh averages about 40 days with snow each year, according to currentresults.com, a science website.
Four times the city has recorded snowfalls of six inches or more after March 23: 11.2 inches on April 8, 1902; 12.7 inches on April 3, 1901; 7 inches on March 30, 1883; and 7.7 inches on April 3 and 4, 1987. A trace of snow has fallen as late as May 31.
Last year during the second two weeks of March, the thermometer rose into the 80s on three days and above 70 degrees on 11 days, records show.
“We were picking asparagus at this time last year,” said Adam Voll, whose family owns Soergel Orchards in Franklin Park.
Apple and cherry blossoms appeared five weeks early. When temperatures later fell below freezing, the cold snap destroyed about 30 million bushels of fruit in the Northeast and Midwest.
“We would much rather have it the way it is this year. We have not planted anything yet,” said Voll, who lost a peach crop last year.
Bill Alko, 47, of Pleasant Hills said he was excited to see the snow.
“Maybe I can get another weekend of skiing in,” he said.
Heidelberg Manager Joe Kauer said public works crews were prepared for the snowfall but “everyone's ready for spring.”
“I'll take a bee sting over a snowstorm any day,” he said.
Rick Wills is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7944 or at email@example.com. Staff writers Doug Gulasy and Stephanie Hacke contributed.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Cops: Man shoots 11-year-old with BB gun; boy is critical
- Rossi: After L.A., NFL should tread carefully
- Pedestrian injured in accident near busway ramp in Carnegie
- Couple attempts theft at North Huntingdon Wal-Mart
- Wrong-way driver causes head-on crash in Center
- Man taken to hospital after New Alexandria house burns
- Kennywood fanatic, 82, rides Jack Rabbit 95 times in a row
- Acme man’s ephemeral sculptures appear to defy laws of physics
- Neighbor arrested after McKeesport house fire, authorities say
- Deer Lakes softball team seeking 2nd WPIAL championship in 4 years
- Memorial Day service in National Cemetery of the Alleghenies still growing